Radical cystectomy is the gold standard for treatment of localized invasive bladder cancer in the United States. In recent years, there has been increasing focus on the importance of surgical technique as a factor that may influence the clinical and oncologic outcome of the operation, beyond the classically recognized patient and tumor-related factors. There is still insufficient high-quality evidence to support the absolute standardization of the surgical technique or the establishment of firm benchmarks by which the individual surgeon can measure performance. However, there is considerable evidence suggesting that 3 aspects of surgical technique have an impact on outcome: (1) Positive surgical margins nearly always result in ultimate cancer death. The rate of positive margins varies with surgeon experience as well as with cancer-specific variables. (2) The extent of lymphadenectomy has a significant impact on recurrence rates of the cancer, regardless of whether the lymph nodes are pathologically positive or not. (3) Higher volume surgeons have lower operative mortality and fewer positive surgical margins than low-volume surgeons. Higher volume hospitals also have lower operative mortalities and shorter hospital stays for patients who have undergone radical cystectomy. In this review, the authors evaluate the evidence supporting each of these statements and suggest potential areas of standardization of surgical technique that could translate into improved patient outcomes.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.urolonc.2006.05.010
View details for Web of Science ID 000243702000011
View details for PubMedID 17208142